Digital Marketing admin  

The 8 cornerstones of marketing

Regardless of your definition of marketing, there is a process associated with marketing your business, products, and services. This process or plan should be framed as one or more goals (I prefer SMART goals), underscored by one or more strategies (a defining policy or action statement). These strategies are then achieved through the use of a series of tactics or action steps.

Fast Marketing Definition

Before I get to the 8 cornerstones of marketing, let me introduce you to another definition of marketing:

Marketing is a two-way interaction with the public, prospects and peers to present the best side of a business to them. You do this to inform them and persuade them of the benefits of buying from that business.

The 8 touchstones

I see a lot of small businesses whose marketing plan is to simply open their doors, physical or digital, and wait for people to walk in. As has been said elsewhere, “Hope is not a strategy.”

The next step is to open the doors and then find a way to yell, “I’m here!” That’s a little better, but what do you do when people actually show up?

Your marketing plan should include tactics to educate people about the benefits of doing business with your company. But once contact is made, you need to move them down a path to keep them informed and happy, and lead them to a place where they will buy from you.

Your marketing plan should have these benchmarks, in this order:

  1. Find potential customers (“A potential customer is anything with a heartbeat”) by communicating with the public

  2. Turn these raw leads into prospects (people who are interested in your product or service) by starting an informational relationship with them

  3. Help persuade prospects to make a purchase

  4. Help new customers find joy in their purchase (minimize buyer’s remorse)

  5. Persuade existing customers to buy more or more often

  6. Help people go from being customers (buyers of service products) to fans of the business

  7. Help fans find more prospects (become unpaid marketing/sales representatives for the business)

  8. start the cycle again

Line vs Spiral

Essentially, your marketing plan is about helping, or guiding, people through the steps from being a leader, to a prospect, to a first-time buyer, to a happy repeat customer, to a fan, to a marketing representative. and unpaid sales.

Many entrepreneurs think of moving through this marketing process as a line. It’s probably not a straight line, but they see it as going through the steps: first A, then B, then C, etc. However, this process is actually a cycle; it starts in one place and then moves until it reaches that starting point once again.

Sure, when you get to the starting point, you can select more people to insert them into your marketing process. But one of the goals of moving people through this process is to lift them higher than they were. For example, a cycle can be explained as taking a person from being a potential customer to a prospect, to making their first purchase. Now they’re back at point A, and this is where many marketers drop the ball. They put the new customer on the same level as people who have never bought from the company! The idea here is to take these new customers up a notch and help them feel comfortable enough to make more purchases from the store. While the strategy is the same (“Help them feel happy enough to make a purchase”), the tactics are different at this level (for example: instead of a discount on the price of a single item, you give them a higher discount based on volume purchases). In this cycle, you want them to go from first-time customers to happy repeat customers to fans of the business.

These cycles should be an upward spiral. It may take customers to “same old ground,” but since you’re both familiar with the process, you can use more detailed and intricate techniques to interact with them. As an example, you may have added a potential customer to your list with just their name and email address. When they make their first purchase, you can add more detailed information to their record; last name, address, date of birth and telephone number. You can then ask them for even more detailed information about themselves. If you’ve developed the relationship well enough, they should be happy to provide it to you.

effective tactics

Of course, the 8 Touchstones by themselves are almost useless. You have to put together a plan of effective tactics that allow you to help people move through the 8 Touchstones. We’ll be discussing them in much more detail soon!

I accept comments, questions and suggestions. Just post them below!

Leave A Comment